Message Lun 3 Aoû 2009 19:47

Increased output at Vedanta

03 Aug 2009 4:22pm GMT
Mining Journal

Vedanta Resources plc has reported higher production in all of its business units. Highlights included commissioning of the first phase of the 500,000t/y Jharsuguda aluminium smelter and acquisition of Dempo Group’s iron-ore mining assets in Goa for US$368 million.

Vedanta reported revenue of US$1.36 billion and earnings (before interest, tax and depreciation) of US$354.7 million. The company also raised US$1.25 billion through a convertible bond issue.

Aluminium production in the quarter to end-June was 125,000t, a significant increase over the corresponding prior quarter. This was primarily due to the ramp up and phased commissioning of the first phase of the Jharsuguda smelter, supported by five units of the captive power plant. The Lanjigarh alumina refinery produced 188,000t of calcined alumina, compared with 136,000t in the corresponding prior quarter.

Construction of the new 1.25Mt/y Jharsuguda II aluminium smelter is reported to be progressing well, with half of the civil works completed.

During the quarter, copper cathode production at the Tuticorin smelter reached 78,000t, compared with 68,000t previously. Cathode production was lower than its rated capacity, primarily on account of low copper in concentrate. Mined metal production at the Australian mines was stable at 7,000t.

In Zambia, KCM produced 43,000t of copper cathodes (including 23,000t from the new Nchanga smelter), significantly higher than the production of 36,000t in the corresponding prior quarter. Output from the Zambian mines was around 19,000t, down almost 10%, primarily on account of grid failures and lower equipment availability at Konkola. The new Nchanga smelter is also reported to be "experiencing some teething problems".

Mined zinc production in the quarter was 183,000t, significantly higher when compared with the corresponding prior quarter due to the commissioning of the new concentrator at Rampura Agucha. HZL produced 139,000t of zinc, up almost 9%. Construction of the 210,000t/y zinc smelter and 100,000t/y lead smelter at Rajpura Dariba are "progressing well".

At Sesa Goa, production of iron ore was 4.9Mt, compared with 4.6Mt in the corresponding quarter. In June, Sesa Goa signed a definitive Share Purchase Agreement under which Sesa has acquired all the outstanding common shares of V S Dempo & Co for US$368 million. The company holds 100% of Dempo Mining Corp and 50% of Goa Maritime Private Ltd. Dempo Mining owns, or has the rights to, mineable reserves and resources estimated at 70Mt of iron ore in Goa. It produced 3.94Mt of iron ore in 2008/9. ... at-vedanta